By Gregory Crofton
There’s a deadly pandemic shutting us in and it’s almost Halloween, so now is the perfect time to be spooked by the new batch of “Unsolved Mysteries” set to premiere Monday October 19th.
Rebooted by Netflix in July, the original show invented true crime television in 1987 when co-creators John Cosgrove and Terry Dunn Meurer secured its broadcast on NBC.
Channel Nonfiction had a conversation with Cosgrove about the evolution of his classic program in January 2019, just after a surprise announcement revealed “Unsolved Mysteries” was back in production. Netflix is the fifth network to broadcast the show, which has more than 580 episodes to its credit.
21 Laps Entertainment, the company behind “Stranger Things,” is a co-executive producer. The new episodes are faithful to the spirit of the original show, but there have been some significant changes made.
Episodes are no longer hosted by a narrator (Robert Stack, Dennis Farina). Each show focuses on a single mystery instead of featuring multiple storylines. And no longer do they provide updates on past cases. The theme music was also freshened up, so now it sounds a little more like the soundtrack from “Halloween.”
Overall the new show is not a disappointment, but several episodes withheld too much information from viewers for too long.
The new episodes that premiere October 20th include:
Ep. 7 – “Washington Insider Murder” – directed by Don Argott
A graduate of West Point who organized the construction of the Vietnam War memorial in Washington D.C., turns up dead in a Delaware landfill.
Ep. 8 – “Death in Oslo” – directed by Robert M. Wise
A woman is found dead in a luxury hotel room. Was it really suicide?
Ep. 9 – “Death Row Fugitive” directed by Clay Jeter and Robert M. Wise
A convicted murder is set free so he can go Christmas shopping.
Ep. 10 – “Tsunami Spirits” – directed by Clay Jeter
The tidal wave that hit Japan in 2011 left some in its wake deeper in touch with the dead than you’d imagine.
Ep. 11 – “Lady in the Lake” – directed by Skye Borgman
Police surmise that a devoted mother and Catholic decided to walk into a freezing cold lake after attending a prayer service. Did it really happen that way?
Ep. 12 – “Stolen Kids” – directed by Jessica Dimmock
Toddler abductions occurred within months of each other at the same Harlem
playground in 1989. Police and locals were put on high alert, but they found no trace of the missing boys.
John Cosgroves and Terry Meurer, co-creators of “Unsolved Mysteries,” share the how Netflix’s global audience reacted to their new shows.
“We’ve been thrilled with how viewers have responded to the first six episodes and how engaged they’ve been in trying to solve the mysteries. With Volume 1, many tips have come in for the Rey Rivera case (“Mystery on the Rooftop”), as well as for Xavier Dupont, the fugitive wanted by the French police (“House of Terror”). We’ve forwarded all those tips to law enforcement. With the Alonzo Brooks case (“No Ride Home”), the FBI announced a $100,000 reward and exhumed Alonzo’s body to do additional testing. We continue to hope that an arrest will be made in that case. I think the big surprise was all the tips that came in about the UFO episode. Many people contacted us to verify that they had witnessed the same UFO as the interviewees in our story.”
Visit www.netflix.com/UnsolvedMysteries to learn more. Below find the trailer for Volume 2.